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Deacon wants to bring youth back to the Church

Deacon wants to bring youth back to the Church

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A newly ordained deacon is hoping that his ministry here will help to revive the dwindling numbers of young people actively involved in the Anglican Church.{{more}}

At a ceremony held at the St. Paul’s Parish Church, Calliaqua, Reverend Deacon Kari Marcelle was ordained last Wednesday, December 15, by Bishop of the Windward Islands the Right Reverend Leopold Friday.

Marcelle, a national of the Bahamas, said: “Either pastors are out of touch or the church is not doing what it needs to do in order to keep them [young people]… hopefully this will be a starting ground for me to build up the young people in any which way I can.”

The 25-year-old deacon said that he is excited about this new chapter in his life, and is looking forward to learning more about St. Vincent and the Grenadines and its people.

“There’s a lot of work ahead, so I’m praying that God equips me for what lies ahead,” Marcelle admitted.

He also believes that in St.Vincent and the Grenadines there is more room for professional growth, because there are not as many priests here as in the Bahamas.

“There’s opportunity for a young person like myself to rise properly and hopefully without church politics!”

Marcelle added that a career within the church has always appealed to him. “I’ve always had a sense that God has been calling me to ministry,” he explained.

Marcelle holds a Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology, a Master of Divinity degree, and a diploma in Secondary Education. In October 2010, he was nominated for two awards within the Bahamas Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture – Pace-setter in Religion and Most Distinguished Youth.

Although he has not fully explored the island, Marcelle noted that from what he has experienced so far, there is not much of a cultural difference between Vincentians and Bahamians.

“Vincentians love hymns just as much as Bahamians!” he chuckled.

Marcelle also had a taste of local elections – having arrived here on December 10.

“Elections here are the same like they are at home,” he remarked. “I had on a red t-shirt the other day and a lot of people made fun of me!”

Marcelle – a self-confessed ‘book worm’ – said that although he has never been into sports, he is looking forward to learning the game of cricket.

“Any sport that a man can play… and then [at the end] his clothes are still white, that’s a sport!”

Marcelle expressed gratitude to all those who had helped him to achieve his goal – especially his mother, other family members, Father Etienne Bowleg (his mentor and father figure), Canon Tynne (Bahamian priest), Bishop Leopold Friday and Father Otis Nicholls.

Several of Marcelle’s family members and friends attended the ordination, including his mother Agatha Marcelle, who is a former Member of Parliament in the Bahamas.

Agatha told SEARCHLIGHT that she was overjoyed at her son’s recent success, and hopes that one day he will become a bishop.

“Maybe not [bishop] of the Windward Islands, but I truly believe that God has called him into this,” she explained. “What I really want for him is that God will use his life to bring young people to the Lord. I want him to be a blessing to others.”

The only tinge of sadness in the joyous occasion was that Revd Deacon Marcelle will be stationed in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, while his mother will return to the Bahamas.

“You took my son, my only child!” Agatha joked.

At the ordination, Reverend Clive Thomas delivered a 23-minute sermon, in which he compared the newly ordained deacon to the prophet Jeremiah, who was also called to ministry at a young age.

Thomas encouraged Marcelle to lead a life that is “worthy” of that to which he has been called. He also called on the congregation and parishioners to support the young deacon.

“Care for him, pray for him and follow him. Support Kari in his ministry to you.”

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